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Morton District 201 Board President outlines priorities for coming term

Morton District 201 Board President outlines priorities for coming term

Morton High School Board members Kal Lwanga, Jessica Jaramillo-Flores, and Board President Jeffry Pesek.

Morton High School Board members Kal Lwanga, Jessica Jaramillo-Flores, and Board President Jeffry Pesek.

The Morton High School District 201 Board Monday (May 4, 2015) approved a reorganization plan and outlined goals that continue to make student needs a priority for the district, Board President Jeffry Pesek said following the meeting.

New and returning Board members were sworn into office at the Board meeting, including Sandra Tomschin, who was elected to a two-year term in themost recent election succeeding Joe Keating, who retired. Also sworn in were Jeff Pesek and Board members Mark Kraft and Lido Manetti. Kraft and Pesek were re-elected in the April 7, 2015 election, while Manetti was elected to a full four-year term after being appointed to fill a vacancy on the Board in February.

Pesek was re-elected as Board President for another two year term. The board also re-elected Kal Lwanga as vice president, and Jessica Jaramillo-Flores was re-elected as board secretary. Both Lwanga and Flores have two more years remaining on their current terms.

Pesek said he plans to detail what he believes are the district’s priorities with the Morton High School District 201 board in the coming weeks. Those priorities, he said, include:

• Accountability
• Enhanced learning opportunities for all children
• Ensure parents and the community are active partners in the process
• Provide safe and well-maintained schools to enhance learning
• Run an efficient business operation

“These are goals that we can achieve that will result in stronger educational achievements for our students,” Pesek said. “They reflect the Board’s commitment to providing the best instruction and educational programs to our students.”

First elected in 2007, Pesek changed the focus of the board and set new priorities including balancing the district’s annual budget. As a result, the Morton District 201 Board has maintained a balanced budget every year for the past five years.

“For 25 years prior to joining the board, the school district operated on a deficit spending plan that left uncertainty in many programs. We changed that by balancing the budget and providing consistency for all of these important school programs,” Pesek said.

Board members said that under Pesek’s leadership, the district has also achieved other goals including expansion of the district’s educational services by implementing a nationally recognized “one-to-one program” that, most importantly, guarantees that every incoming District 201 student receives a computer.

“You know in today’s day and age of technology and computers, many people take computers for granted and assume students have access to them at their homes. That’s not always the case,” Pesek noted.

“This program guarantees that every student will have a computer for their entire high school career, which strengthens their education. You cannot advance in our society without maximizing your computer experience and knowledge.”

Pesek also expanded the AP Program for students. In 2010, we had roughly about 300 students in the AP Program. Today, there are more than 3,000 AP Tests being given with an enrollment of about 1,900 students, that’s a significant participation increase.

For more information on Morton High School District 201, visit the website atwww.morton201.org

(PHOTO CAPTION: Morton High School Board members Kal Lwanga, Jessica Jaramillo-Flores, and Board President Jeffry Pesek)

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